Rustler Killed, 49 Cows Recovers In Benue

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By Toryila KAJO, Makurdi

Over fourth nine cows and sheep allegedly rustled from some northern parts of the country into Benue state are now in the custody of Benue state government, even as  one of the rustlers was allegedly killed during a fierce gun battle with security operatives.

It was gathered that the large number of cattle were intercepted in Guma Local Government area by members of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) in conjunction with Vigilante Group of Nigeria and taken to a settlement near Tor Anyiin in Guma.

The CJTF led by Alhaji Mohammed Adamu, alleged that the herders who came with assorted cattle  suspected to have been rustled from four states of Kaduna, Bauchi, Gombe and Jigawa states were arrested after during a heavy gun battle that resulted in the death of one person.

Special Adviser to the governor of Benue state on Security Matters, Colonel Edwin Jando retired who was in the area on the directives of the governor to ascertain the genuineness of the security report expressed dismay over what he described as a deliberate move by herders to put Benue state in a negative light before the nation. 

Accompanied by Assistant Commissioner of Police, Operations, Mr. Momo Umar, Senior Special Assistant on Security, Mr. Denen Igbana and the chairman of Guma Local Government area, who is also the state ALGON chairman, Mr. Sam Agah, the Security Adviser wandered why Benue is chosen as a dumping ground by cattle rustlers; observing that the number of cattles found on ground in a settlement near Tor Anyiin contradicted the figures that had already been communicated to the governor.

In an interview, the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of operations, confirmed that the number of cows rustled and the death of alleged criminal who was said to have opened fire on the CJTF on sighting them, but was over powered in the encounter and directed that the corpse be evacuated from the bush for burial and urged members of the community and herders living there to avoid act that will breach the existing peace